Leith councillor runs marathon to raise money for defibrillator

Councillor Lewis Ritchie is preparing to run the Loch Ness Marathon. Picture: Scott Louden

Councillor Lewis Ritchie is preparing to run the Loch Ness Marathon. Picture: Scott Louden

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Councillor Lewis Ritchie is set to run the Loch Ness Marathon this weekend in a bid to raise money to buy a defibrillator for Leith.

Mr Ritchie is hopeful he will complete the 26.2 mile course on Sunday in aid of St John and The City Defibrillator Project - which aims to install the heart start machines at a range of strategic sites across the city.

Mr Ritchie, who recently completed the Scottish Half Marathon, said he has been training avidly to prepare for the event.

He said: “I did a 22 mile run the other day and that went fine.

“After I reach mile 18 I know it will be a killer, the Loch Ness Marathon is well known for its steep ascent.

“But overall I’m feeling quite prepared.”

Discussions are ongoing as to where the new defibrillator would be housed, but at the moment, Mr Ritchie said it is most likely to be at the Citizens Advice bureau - when it makes its move to Dalmeny Street.

He said: “Every defibrillator has the potential to save a life.

“I’ve watched a man have a heart attack and die, and I couldn’t do anything to save him.

“By running the marathon, I wanted to do something that would save lives.”

Hibs football club have backed Mr Ritchie and his fundraising efforts.

The Evening News has been campaigning for better defibrillator provision with the family of Jamie Skinner - who died of a fatal cardiac arrest while playing football in 2013.

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